Archive for March 4, 2022

Friday, March 4, 2022

Pure Paste 1.1

Sindre Sorhus (tweet, via Ryan Jones):

How many times have you pasted some text into an email and ended up with a mess of different font sizes?

Pure Text lets you paste as plain text by default. It sits in the menu bar and clears formatting (fonts, colors, bold, links, tables, etc.) from the text you copy. However, it does not touch unrelated content like files, images, etc. It also ignores content copied from password managers.

You can also choose to manually clear formatting whenever needed instead of automatically.

It’s free, and the new version lets you automatically exclude certain apps.

Note that it does strip images that are mixed in with the copied text. And, for apps like OmniOutliner that use different characters for plain text vs. rich text, it will give you the plain text characters rather than just removing the formatting.

Most of the apps that I paste into support Paste and Match Style, and for the ones that don’t I’ve been in the habit of pasting into an empty BBEdit window and then copying again in order to clear the formatting. So I don’t think this is really something I need, but it’s an easy way to get the behavior most users probably want most of the time.


Update (2022-03-07): Sören:

Microsoft Office does this better. After(!) pasting, it shows you a contextual menu where you can choose different modes of which styles you wish to keep, and each one comes with a live preview (and they also come with an access key if you remember your preference for this case).

That’s cool, but unfortunately Excel doesn’t have a one-step Paste and Match Style command.

Update (2022-04-19): Josh Centers:

There are numerous ways to solve this problem. Some are free, and others take advantage of a commercial utility that you may already have for another purpose. If the built-in solutions don’t work in your particular workflow, turn to one of the alternatives.

On the Origin of the iPhone

John Gruber:

Fadell’s story adds up; Businessweek’s description of the embedded Linux project being led by Fadell does not. (Businessweek’s description of Forstall and Fadell as political rivals definitely adds up, though. The cutthroat internal politics of Apple under Steve Jobs — strong personalities with large egos — amidst tumultuous technical drama (see timeline below) sounds like the makings for a damn good show like Succession.)


Steve Jobs was famously good at picking the winning horse early. A few sources I contacted mentioned missing Jobs’s decisiveness. His good taste is famous, but his faith in his intuition was extraordinary too. His decision to back Forstall’s project to use Mac OS X as the basis for the iPhone’s OS was obviously correct, but also was made quickly.

It’s entirely possible that Facebook’s years-long equivocation over its AR/VR OS strategy isn’t a sign of indecision on Mark Zuckerberg’s part, per se, but rather an indicator of an industry-wide trend. A fear of shutting ideas down. That every idea should be explored in depth — why not, with so much money available to spend? FOMO, at the level of giant corporations, with trillion-dollar stakes.

But the “bake-off” period at Apple for the iPhone’s OS lasted only a few months and involved, at most, a few dozen engineers and designers. According to The Information, Facebook’s XROS project lasted over four years and involved over 300 employees by the time it was shuttered in November. It is interesting to compare the two bake-offs, but only insofar as how differently they were conducted.

He has a good timeline, beginning with the Motorola Rokr.

Ken Kocienda:

This is the iPhone software development environment in February 2006. The software itself was in a similar state—a lot of duct tape and chicken wire. Yet, with much hard work, we were ready to announce less than a year later.

See also: The Talk Show.


Transcend JetDrive Lite 330

Tim Hardwick:

Transcend has begun offering its JetDrive Lite 330 expansion cards for 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models, providing users of Apple’s latest Macs with an affordable way to increase storage capacity. The cards provide up to 512GB of additional storage for less than $90, giving users a viable alternative to paying Apple’s high prices for more internal storage at point of purchase.

I used to run my 2012 MacBook Pro with an SD Card permanently in it for my Time Machine backup. That’s less necessary now that we have APFS, but this still seems like a useful option for auxiliary storage given how compact it is. The performance is more like a hard drive than an SSD, but that’s fine for storing photos or archived files.

Update (2022-04-21): Tim Hardwick:

The 1TB option adds to Transcend’s existing JetDrive capacities, which start at $35.99 for the 128GB version and $250 for the 1TB capacity card on Amazon.

Open Web Advocacy

Open Web Advocacy (via Tim Hardwick, tweet):

Apple’s ban of third party browsers on iOS is deeply anti-competitive, starves the Safari/WebKit team of funding and has stalled innovation for the past 10 years and prevented Web Apps from taking off on mobile.

That part we’ve already heard a lot about over the years, but they also make an important point about the limits on third-party iOS browsers that do use WebKit.

Thomas Claburn:

OWA organiser Stuart Langridge said not only is it the case that every iOS browser is just a re-skinned version of Safari but that the WebKit-based versions of Chrome, Edge, and Firefox are even less capable than WebKit-based Safari because they lack access to certain APIs that Apple makes available to its own browser.

As an example, he described how he has a shortcut to Wordle, a web app, on his iPhone home screen. “I normally use Firefox on iOS,” he explained. “And I had to switch back to Safari because you can’t add things to your home screen from another browser. It’s only available to Safari. So third-party browsers, even if they’re the same engine as Safari, don’t have access to the same APIs.”

Third-party browers also lack access to Security Code AutoFill and bookmarks.

Langridge acknowledges that different browser teams have different tolerance levels for new proposals, but says there’s a whole set of APIs that don’t raise security or privacy issues that Safari tends to fall behind on because of its slower release cadence – Safari updates tend to come out with iOS updates, often with months between releases, while Chrome ships every four weeks.